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Researchers Develop Method to Biosynthesize Glycoprotein

Researchers developed a novel method for the biosynthesis of glycoprotein, according to a study published on July 12, 2018.

This research was conducted by the researchers at the Cornell University. Until now, manufacture of glycosylated proteins in cell-free systems were not possible. Glycosylation is an important process in many biological processes, and being able to understand and control this mechanism will be useful for disease treatment and prevention.

Professors from Cornell University and Northwestern University together developed a novel approach as a solution to this problem. Their system adds an important glycosylation component in a one pot reaction along with capitalizing on the recent advances in CFPS. Any protein can be then freeze-dried and reactivated for point-of-use synthesis by simply adding water.

Rapid access to protein-based medicines in remote settings would be beneficial for people. DeLisa has conducted a well-organized research on the molecular mechanisms underlying protein biogenesis in the complex environment of a living cell. This area has limitations, which are the cell walls themselves.

Cell extracts from an optimized laboratory strain of E. coli, CLM24 that were selectively enriched with key glycosylation components were prepared by the research team for the study. A simplified reaction scheme was enabled by the resulting extracts, which was dubbed as cell-free glycoprotein synthesis (CFGpS) by the researchers.

Jessica Stark, co-author of the study said, “A major advance of this work is that our cell-free extracts contain all of the molecular machinery for protein synthesis and protein glycosylation. What that means is you only need to add DNA instructions for your protein of interest to make a glycoprotein in CFGpS. This is a drastic simplification from cell-based methods and allows us to make sophisticated glycoprotein molecules in less than a day.” Moreover, CFGpS method, which is highly modular, allows for the use of distinct and diverse extracts to be mixed for the production of a variety of glycoproteins.